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Covid-19 Update

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 2:23 pm on 24th March 2020.

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Photo of Jeremy Hunt Jeremy Hunt Chair, Health and Social Care Committee, Chair, Health and Social Care Committee 2:23 pm, 24th March 2020

I thank the Health Secretary for the superhuman efforts he has taken to resolve the issues around PPE in the last week. The evidence is that we are in a much better situation now than we were a week ago. He will not mind if I follow up what the shadow Health Secretary said about testing. The concern is that we appear to be testing on a daily basis virtually no more people than we were over a week ago, when the commitment was to increase the daily number of tests from 5,000 to 25,000. Given that this is a vital part of the success of the suppression strategies in South Korea, Taiwan, Singapore and Hong Kong, can he give us an estimated date when we will get back to routine covid-19 testing in the community of all suspected cases? Even if that is three or four weeks away, a date means that there is a plan, and without a date, people will not be confident that this really is the plan.